Last night it was Havering's turn to elect its first citizen for 2011/12. Outgoing mayor Cllr Pam Light will be a really tough act to follow, having got no fewer than 694 civic engagements under her belt during the year.
Her deputy, Cllr Melvin Wallace will take over with the benefit of a thorough grounding in the work - he has been deputy mayor for two years. Melvin worked in the city as a stockbroker for over forty years before his retirement and at the council he has been a well informed chairman of the pensions committee, helping to safeguard the financial future for our hard working employees. His wife Joan will make an excellent mayoress.
Melvin's deputy will be one of my closest friends, Cllr Lynden Thorpe. Lynden was elected to represent Squirrel's Heath ward at a by election several years ago. Her grandfather was the mayor and leader of Romford Council for 25 years (!) and his name is on the chain of office that her husband David will be wearing.
The mayor's charity for the coming year will be Havering's own St Francis Hospice and their work is explained at http://www.sfh.org.uk/ .